Readers Pick Of The Month: How To Do Instagram Hashtag Research




Social media is used for everything nowadays. You don’t believe us? Let’s just think about it. 

  • If you want to connect with somebody, you’ll ask for their Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, etc.
  • If you’re applying for a job, chances are that your interviewers will look at your social media accounts. 
  • If you’re looking to buy something, you’ll take a look at the company’s Facebook page. 

Social media is so commonly used in today’s technological world that researchers estimate an increase in social media users. It is believed that by the end of 2021, social networks sites will reach 3.78 billion users.

With so many people spending around 145 minutes per day online, it would be a wasted opportunity not to invest in social media marketing. 

But if you decided to invest in this particular type of marketing, then one of the social media platforms that you should be looking at is Instagram. With over one million active users, Instagram is one of the most popular platforms at the moment. 

When posting on Instagram, you need to carefully select your content and your hashtags. The content is what people will see and the hashtags are how people will find you. 

So to say hashtags are pretty important is an understatement. But how do you find the right hashtags for Instagram? Let’s found out: 

How Do Hashtags Work?

If you have been on social media, then it is most likely that you have seen or used hashtags already. But if you haven’t, then here’s a brief definition:

Hashtags are words or keyphrases that have the pound symbol (#) before them. 

Examples: #tradingbusiness #coffeeinla #redbullgivesyouwings #icebucketchallange #socialbee

Generally speaking, any word or group of words can be a hashtag. But if you’re looking at business hashtags, you will notice that most of the words used are related to the field or to the company. 

What Are Hashtags Used For?

Hashtags have two main purposes:

1. To group posts in a certain category 

2. To help users navigate social media platforms better

So essentially, hashtags work like keywords on search engines. People type them in the search bars and expect to find posts that have been tagged with the hashtag they used. 

For businesses, the benefits of using hashtags are evident. With hashtags, a business can:

  • Get brand exposure
  • Gain more followers
  • Increase the number of likes, comments, and shares
  • Show support for causes and social issues
  • Help your target audience find your company
  • Disclose sponsored partnerships 

In order to reap the benefits of using hashtags on Instagram, you will need to learn how to use them properly. Because picking a few random words, throwing the pound symbol in front of them, and putting them in your copies is not going to do it. 

Let’s see how you can pick the best hashtags for your business: 

How to Do Instagram Hashtag Research?

Types of Instagram Hashtags

The first thing you should know is that there are different types of hashtags. Based on the purpose of your post, you know what type of hashtag to use. 

#1: Community Hashtags 

These hashtags revolve around certain communities. They bring people who have the same ideals and goals together.  These are hashtags that businesses can use in order to create their own communities or bring their existing communities together. 

These hashtags can refer to:

  • Your products or services — #marketingservices
  • Your field or niche — #socialmediamarketing
  • The location of your business — #marketinginlondon
  • Time-related hashtags — #busymonday #mondayintheoffice
  • National holidays, events, or seasonal hashtags — #happyhalloween, #superbowl
  • The Instagram community you’re part of — #entrepreneursofinstagram

#2: Branded Hashtags 

Branded hashtags are hashtags that are related to your brand or to a marketing campaign. These are usually represented by your business’s name, a product’s name, or a certain catchphrase from an advertising campaign. 

An example of a branded hashtag is Redbull’s #givesyouwings hashtag, which is a common catchphrase for the company. 

When selecting your branded hashtags, make sure that they are memorable and easy to use. The same can be said about the hashtag representing your brand. 

#3: Descriptive Hashtags

These are possibly the most common hashtags on Instagram. They describe what can be found in your posts. 

So for example if you’re a photographer and you post some new shots of a lake surrounded by mountains, you can use the following hashtags:

#mountains #mountainside #lake #nature #naturalscenary

Basically, you can use any word that you believe describes your post. By doing so, you will make sure that potential customers find you, even without knowing your brand. 

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Finding the Right Hashtags

Knowing what kinds of hashtags there are can only help you so much. Now you need to know what hashtags to use to reach your end goal on Instagram. 

Find Niche-Specific Hashtags 

You would think that using the most popular hashtags would help you get the clout you need. But using popular hashtags just for the sake of gaining followers or likes can actually do more damage than good. 

Here are the most popular hashtags at the moment, according to Best Hashtags: 

#popular #instagram #follow #love #trending #like #viral #instagood #explorepage #photography #likeforlikes #followforfollowback #music #tiktok #fashion #explore #photooftheday #famous #instadaily #memes #likes #picoftheday #followme #beautiful #cute #model #style #funny #beauty #bhfyp

Now, let’s imagine the following scenario: 👇

You are selling drones. You want to promote your business on Instagram and you decide to post a picture with a drone. One of the hashtags that accompanies the pictures is #love. 

When people look for this hashtag, they will look for love poems, love stories, pictures that somehow convey the emotion, one way or another. These are not people that are likely to buy drones. Simply put, they are not your target audience.

This is less likely to happen if you use niche-specific hashtags. But there’s also a catch. If you use specialized terms that nobody but people working in your field can know, then it’s very likely that regular customers will not find you based on hashtags. 

This is why you need to strive for balance. Use hashtags related to your field and business, but don’t make them too specific. 

Research Your Audience and Competition 

Get to see what your audience is looking for. It is most likely that you already have a buyer persona, so put yourself in your buyer persona’s shoes for a few seconds. What would they type when looking for something like your product?

A good tip is to perform keyword research, use some of those keywords as your hashtags, and see how they perform. After all, Instagram has a search engine integrated into it and it works on the same principles as any search engine would. 

When compiling your list of hashtags, you can also take a look at the hashtags your competitors are using. Make sure you pick the ones who have the same or a bigger list of followers than you do and see which posts of theirs are collecting the more likes, comments, and shares. 

This will not only help you out with your hashtag research, but you will also see what kind of content works best in your field and for your audience.  

Work with Tools 

There are plenty of tools that can help you find the most popular hashtags or keywords, such as RiteTag or Wordtracker. These are good tools to find keywords, but if you want to make things easier on yourself, you will need to make bundles of hashtags that are ready to be used.

For this purpose, you can use SocialBee. With this tool, you can automate your social media posts on all kinds of platforms, such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google My Business, and Pinterest and you can create hashtag collections that you can use for each post in part. 

After you have created your hashtag collection, you can use it at any time when you’re creating new posts. And with SocialBee, you can even add your hashtag collection in the first comment on Instagram, seeing that this is a well-known and successful practice. 

Once your hashtag research is done, you can save your hashtags in our tool and use them at your earliest convenience.

Performing hashtag research at least once a month to see if your hashtags are still relevant is also a must. Check your hashtags and renew the list if necessary. 

Use Correct Hashtag Etiquette 

Now that you have your hashtags, you will have to put them to good use. To do so, you will need to know how things work on Instagram, hashtag-wise.

How Many Hashtags Should You Use?

The first thing you need to know is the number of hashtags that you should use. The maximum number of hashtags you can add is 30. But generally speaking, brands go for five to 10 hashtags. 

Pro Tip: Use five to 10 hashtags for your Instagram posts.

The more popular your brand becomes, the fewer hashtags you can use. Once you have reached a peak in social media popularity, you can use one to three hashtags, most of them being your brand’s name or your catchphrase. 

Where to Put Your Hashtags?

Your hashtags usually come at the end of your caption. If you want to separate your caption from your hashtags and give your post a clean look, then you can leave three empty paragraphs before your hashtags.

If you have an important caption and you don’t want to distract your audience from it, then you can put your hashtags in the first comment of your post.

How to Track Your Hashtags?

To track your Instagram posts, and essentially, your hashtags, you will need an Instagram business account. Once you have one, you can access the Instagram insights and see how many impressions you got from your hashtags.

What are Instagram impressions? Basically, these are statistics that will tell you how many times your content was shown to a user. 

Bottom Line

Instagram is a great place to market your business, but to do so, you will need great content and well-researched hashtags. 

Creating attention-grabbing posts is easy once you have SocialBee, because SocialBee will help you share your content on Instagram. Be it single images, videos, carousel posts, or stories, SocialBee has your back.  And all you have to do is research and find the hashtags that will bring you closer to your goals. 

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